Kemi Omololu-Olunloyo, 52, daughter of former Oyo governor, has narrated how she was circumcised with a razor blade when she was a little girl and how she bled for close to a week with no anaesthetic administered for the pain.
Speaking in a recent interview with the International Business Times U.K, the famous social media personality opened up on how female genital mutilation, FGM impacted her life.
“There was no anaesthetic and a sharp razor blade was used. I remember my sister and I screaming afterwards. We went home bleeding in diapers and, for a week, it was like we were little girls with menstrual periods. My mom was bathing us and diapering us.
Deep down, mom was not happy for some reason.”
After years of resentment towards her mother, Olunloyo finally confronted her in 2012.
“She burst into tears telling me that our late paternal grandmother ordered my dad to have us do it. This tradition is over 70-years-old.
Our grandmother was a traditional Muslim woman who dictated many rules to her young son, my dad,” she explained.
Olunloyo‘s genitalia were only partially removed, meaning she did not experience difficulties while giving birth. The psychological and physical consequences of the mutilation, however, still linger in her life.
“Calling it an operation is nothing. It was a cultural barbaric act used to decrease the female libido. It caused me post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) for life.
I don’t experience orgasm during sex and when I tried to promote the use of sex toys among Nigerian women, men started attacking me saying I was discouraging African women ‘from the real thing’.
Sex is not important. I have no libido or urge to have sex and I’ve been celibate for 10 years. Millions of women in Nigeria go through this, but they cannot talk or be outspoken like me. It is shameful and a disgrace to them.See Also
Many women say they fake orgasms and others have husbands who go out to prostitutes and girlfriends. FGM has destroyed marriages here.
Oyo state still practices it. Only the Ijebus people across the Yorubaland where I am from in Nigeria don’t do it at all.
My message to girls who have been through it is to stay strong and get into support groups. I would like to be a UN Ambassador and travel around Africa forming support groups in communities and educating girls about sex education the right way, instead of cutting part of their genitals off causing a lifelong traumatic problem.”
According to reports, in 2015, former Nigerian president, Goodluck Jonathan passed a law banning FGM. Among other things, the legislation also forbids men from abandoning women and children without economic support.
However, a report by NGO, 28 Too Many, claimed earlier in October that around 24.8% of girls and women aged between 15 and 49 still undergo FGM in Nigeria, where an estimated total of 20 million women and girls have undergone the practice.
The organisation said the practice is more prevalent in urban areas (32%) compared to rural ones (19.3%) and among Christian and traditional religions in the south-east (49%) and south-west (47.5%). The north-east and north-west areas of the country have the lowest prevalence.